Health Care

Moderna says COVID-19 vaccine is 100 percent effective in 12- to 17-year-olds

Moderna announced on Tuesday that studies had found that its COVID-19 vaccine was 100 percent effective at stopping infection in adolescents aged 12 to 17 and that it planned on submitting the findings to global regulators in days.

“We are encouraged that mRNA-1273 was highly effective at preventing COVID-19 in adolescents. It is particularly exciting to see that the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine can prevent SARS-CoV-2 infection,” Moderna CEO Stéphane Bancel said in the announcement. “We will submit these results to the U.S. FDA and regulators globally in early June and request authorization. We remain committed to doing our part to help end the COVID-19 pandemic.”

According to Moderna, 3,732 participants aged 12 to 17 were involved in the studies. No cases of COVID-19 were observed in any of the vaccinated participants and “no significant safety concerns” were identified.

The vaccine was shown to be 93 percent effective two weeks after the first dose was administered and 100 percent effective after the second dose, according to the pharmaceutical company.

This announcement from Moderna comes about two weeks after Pfizer’s vaccine was authorized for children ages 12 to 15.

As CNBC notes, the Food and Drug Administration is expected to authorize Moderna’s vaccine for adolescents. The approval process could take up to a month, which would provide enough time for students to get vaccinated before classes resume in the fall.

Several government leaders across the U.S. have pledged to fully return students to schools in the next few months. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) said this week that students in the city would be learning “all in-person, no remote” by the fall.

Although some health experts have said that herd immunity is unlikely to be achieved due to rising COVID-19 variants, immunizing children against the virus will go a long way in raising the overall immunity of the country.

Most have said that herd immunity could be achieved once 70 percent of the population is vaccinated. According to the most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 60 percent of U.S adults have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and nearly 50 percent are fully vaccinated.

Children are at a lower risk of developing severe cases of COVID-19 than adults, though older children and teens are at a higher risk than those who are younger. They are also believed to be less likely to spread the virus, though the role children play in spreading the virus is not fully understood.

Updated at 8:56 a.m.

Tags Bill de Blasio COVID-19 COVID-19 vaccines Moderna Moderna COVID-19 vaccine RNA vaccines

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